Regions struggle with the consequences of climate change. A Climate Action Plan is being created in South Moravia – EURACTIV.cz

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Rising sea levels, long periods of drought, extreme weather, heat waves or soil erosion. A changing climate threatens basically all parts of the world. In the Czech Republic, one of the most affected regions is the South Moravian Region, which at the beginning of the year presented its own plan to deal with climate change. Other regions are not left behind in the fight either.

Climate change has a strong impact on the whole of the Czech Republic. Last year was a record year in this respect. Globally, the global temperature was on average 1.46 °C higher, in the Czech Republic even by 2.2 °C. The South Moravian and Zlín Regions are most affected by drought and lack of drinking water. Last year, the annual precipitation totals and groundwater levels in both regions were below normal. This is because there are more tropical days when the temperature exceeds 30 °C, and on the contrary, the number of days with snow cover is decreasing.

“South Moravia has problems with wind erosion and soil drying, so it is necessary to adapt our cities, villages and free nature and landscape to climate changes. They struggle with these phenomena very strongly in the South Moravian region, with which even I, as a Brno resident, have real experience. Climate change is not just about melting glaciers. In the concrete examples given, we all feel it. We must therefore not only adapt the surroundings, but also focus on reducing emissions,” commented the Minister of the Environment on the situation in southern Moravia Petr Hladík (KDU-ČSL).

And this is exactly what the leadership of the mentioned region responded to and has been working on the Climate Action Plan of the South Moravian Region since last December. In its current form, it assumes, for example, that CO2 production in the region will decrease by 2,105 tons, which roughly corresponds to the annual emissions from 1,000 cars. In addition, a number of investment projects worth more than 500 million crowns are planned.

“The key goals of this plan are to reduce emissions, increase energy self-sufficiency and strengthen the region’s ability to adapt to new conditions,” the governor of the South Moravian Region presented the plan Jan Grolich (KDU-ČSL).

“This is a fundamental strategic document that will also allow us to access the European Union’s funds for adaptation to climate change. The South Moravian Region can thus receive 10 to 30 million euros,” he commented on the plan Jan Locksmith (KDU-ČSL), deputy governor of the South Moravian Region.

The South Moravian region will involve a mix of organizations

The plan is currently in its early stages.

“With the end of January and the beginning of February, the preparation process became very intense. On the one hand, the work of expert groups (EC Energy, EC Landscape Adaptation, EC Adaptation of Settlements, EC Transport, EC Implementation) is ongoing, which identify key topics to be solved (problems, risks, but also the specifics of the region and opportunities), and work on the structure of goals and proposed measures. On the other hand, in the coming weeks, there will be a meeting with stakeholders, i.e. with those actors who will be affected by the climate plan,” she explained to Euractiv.cz in February Dita Tesařováclimate specialist from the South Moravian Agency for Public Innovation JINAG, who is the main coordinator of the plan.

At the current stage, the region wants to find out what all the relevant players need. “We will then transfer these suggestions to the expert groups, and the experts will appropriately take them into account in the proposals,” Tesařová described the procedure.

“A really interesting mix of organizations and institutions showed interest in cooperation – for example, all Brno universities, which are solving their sustainability strategies in parallel, or even large companies that are in the process of fulfilling ESG rules,” Tesařová praised the interest of stakeholders.

“We were asked to participate in expert groups in the areas of public procurement and transport, because we have experts and expertise that we can pass on,” commented the involvement of the largest university in Brno, Masaryk, its press spokesperson Radim Sajbot.

The situation in other regions

The South Moravian Region is not the only region that actively reacts to climate change. Other regions with their own adaptation strategies are the Olomouc, Liberec and Pardubice regions.

The Pardubice Region established the Institute of Environmental Research and Applications (IEVA) to address climate change challenges. “The institute also works closely with local governments and those who manage the landscape, i.e. farmers and foresters, and helps prepare their projects to improve the functions of the landscape,” he described Miroslav Krčil (3PK), councilor of the Pardubice region for rural areas, agriculture and the environment.

As of 2020, the Moravian-Silesian Region has also developed an adaptation strategy for the effects of climate change. “It is currently being evaluated and its update is being prepared,” she said for the Euractiv.cz server Nikola Birklenovápress spokesperson of the region.

In addition, the Moravian-Silesian Region is at the forefront of the project LIFE COALA for the period 2021–2031, which is co-financed from the EU subsidy program LIFE. The goal of the project is to increase the region’s resistance to climate change. As part of the project, the region has already launched the MISE KLIMA portal, where it publishes information about what climate measures exist and how they can be financed.

The region also supported the award ceremony last year Adapterra Awards, which recognizes projects adapting cities, houses and landscapes to climate change. Among other things, the South Bohemian Region also participated in the competition. “As part of the national competition, the South Bohemian Region Award for the most successful project in our region will be announced,” said the region’s spokeswoman Hana Brožková.

Support from the EU and the Ministry

The South Bohemian Region is currently finalizing its own strategic document of the region’s climate change adaptation strategy. He wants to use it to finance other larger projects, for example within the aforementioned LIFE subsidy program. This instrument supports activities related to the improvement of the environment and the climate, and during the current financial period the Union allocated €5.45 billion to it.

Municipalities can also turn to the Ministry of the Environment when dealing with the effects of climate change. “The State Environmental Fund regularly issues calls from the National Environmental Program specifically for the creation of an Action Plan for Sustainable Energy and Climate (SECAP). There have already been five calls for a total of 50 million crowns, we are preparing another one for this year,” she answered the question of how the ministry helps, its Veronika Krejci.

Cities, municipalities and associations of municipalities themselves can then join the Pact of Mayors initiative if they decide to fulfill the EU’s climate protection goals in their territory. “The key thing is that this is an initiative that follows a common methodology for developing Action Plans, with these plans covering both climate change mitigation and climate change adaptation. More than 750 cities and municipalities in the Czech Republic are currently involved in the Covenant of Mayors,” added Krejčí.

The article is in Czech

Tags: Regions struggle consequences climate change Climate Action Plan created South Moravia EURACTIV .cz

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